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This review is from: Marion Zimmer Bradley's Sword of Avalon (Hardcover)
At the end of the Bronze Age on the Island of the Mighty off the western coast of Europe, traitors kill the royal rulers of Ai-Zir; burning to the ground the village of Azon. Fearing for her nephew the rightful ruler and believing in a vision that once the mists clear he will be king, pregnant Anderle the Lady of Avon flees with young Mikantor before he is assassinated. Although she regrets having to do so, she leaves him with others to raise. Anderle gives birth to Tirilan before returning to Avalon with sadness in her heart.
After being sold into slavery. Mikantor eventually works for blacksmith bastard Prince Velantos whose father is the King of Tiryns on the Achaea Peninsula in the Middle Sea. Meanwhile back home in Avalon, while evil sorcerer Galid tries to take control of the kingdom with only Anderle opposing him, rumors abound that the rightful heir to the throne is returning so killers are sent forth to find and assassinate him without understanding the fulfilling prophecy they start. Tirilan, who loves Mikantor, assumes he is dead in spite of her mom's belief so she becomes a celibate priestess.
The latest Avalon fantasy is a super prequel that will grip fans of the saga and should lead newcomers to seek the backlist. The story line is fast-paced throughout while the cast is as strong as Excalibur. This is a winner as Diana L. Paxson provides a strong tale that will surely leave the late great Marion Zimmer Bradley smiling with joy with this entry in her beloved saga.